Books

The cover of Melanie Finn's novel "The Underneath" next to a photo of her in the woods.
From left: Two Dollar Radio / Libby March, Courtesy

The Northeast Kingdom is known for its pastoral beauty — but that’s only part of the view of the region presented in Melanie Finn’s latest novel, The Underneath. Her characters exist in the brutal underbelly of rural Vermont that’s ravaged by the opioid epidemic.

Retired lawyer James Dunn's book "Breach of Trust" looks at the scandal surrounding Chittenden County Assistant Judge Jane Wheel in the 1980s, tracing the growing controversy as it made its way up to the Vermont Supreme Court.
Onion River Press, courtesy

Lying under oath. Twisting court decisions for personal gain. Misuse of public money. And corruption in the judiciary that went all the way to Vermont’s highest court.

It may sound like the latest legal thriller, but it's the true story that rocked the state in the 1980s, ending with an investigation that saw the first-ever felony charges brought against a Vermont judge.

Cartoonist Jason Lutes, whose self portrait appears top left, spent more than 20 years writing and drawing the multi-volume historical epic "Berlin." The final volume was published in September.
Jason Lutes / Drawn & Quarterly

A grizzled journalist writing through his middle age. A young artist in her 20s fleeing an upper middle-class life traced out by her parents. The two meet on a train headed to Berlin in 1928, and their lives unfold, connect and diverge amid the backdrop of a changing Germany between the World Wars. They're among the characters in the graphic novel Berlin by cartoonist and Center for Cartoon Studies professor Jason Lutes.

Madeleine Kunin joined "Vermont Edition" and a live audience to discuss her new book, "Coming of Age: My Journey to the Eighties."
Anna Ste. Marie / VPR

Former Gov. Madeleine Kunin has been an author, ambassador, advocate and governor in a career that's spanned decades. Now that long life is the focus of her new book about aging.

Gov. Kunin joins Vermont Edition in front of a live audience to talk about her "journey to the eighties" and how aging changes us in mind and spirit. And as the only woman who's served as Vermont's Governor, we'll ask her about the role of women in our current political climate.

Illustrator Harry Bliss, his dog Penny, author Kate DiCamillo and The Flying Pig Bookstore owner Elizabeth Bluemle pose at The Film House, in Burlington. All three (humans) happen to be creators of picture books about dogs, published by Candlewick Press.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Over the weekend, a crowd of picture book fans got a chance to meet award-winning author Kate DiCamillo and illustrator Harry Bliss, a part-time Burlington resident. Attendees also got to know one of the furry, four-legged inspirations for the duo's new picture book.

Third graders Max Becker, Anastasia Moshovetis and Eliza Frehsee, from left, hold up a question about Leo Arden, a character in one of Chris Harris' poems whose parents forgot to teach him the number eight.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

At Guilford Central School, the entire school – kindergarten through sixth grade – gets together for Community Music Time.

Sometimes musicians from the greater community come in to perform. But on the day Dorothy's List was there, it was small ensembles of sixth graders who took the spotlight to highlight a book they'd read.

Wilson Ring says hello to Murphy the Dog after the pooch's odyssey of more than a year finally came to an end.
Lucy Ring

In early 2016, a collective sigh of relief could be heard from the town of Waterbury when Murphy the Dog was caught and returned to its owners. For a year and a half, the community pulled together in an effort to find this amazing golden retriever. His odyssey is now an e-book called Catching Murphy, written by long-time Associated Press reporter Wilson Ring.

Cartoonist Rachel Lindsay's first book is "RX," a graphic memoir of her struggles with bipolar mania.
Courtesy Rachel Lindsay

Hearing the travails of someone's mental health struggles is not easy. But Vermont cartoonist Rachel Lindsay has taken a different approach to sharing her story of living with bipolar disorder. She has told it in a new graphic novel called RX.

Christy Mihaly's first illustrated book for children is a rhyming picture book about making hay.
Holiday House publishers, courtesy

Vermont’s farms are the stuff of legend. The iconic barn, the determined farmer, the sturdy tractor and fresh-cut fields bursting with towering bales of hay. But you wouldn't be the first to realize — hey, there are no stories about hay!

East Calais author Christy Mihaly's new illustrated children's book aims to fill that gap in your child's bookshelf.

Novelist Anna Katharine Green, top left, and her late 1800s novels like "The Leavenworth Case" and "Marked Personal" created the template of modern detective fiction.
Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

You may have never heard of the novelist Anna Katharine Green. But if you’ve ever read a detective novel, or followed the sleuthing exploits of Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple or even Inspector Gamache—you’ve been enjoying the countless authors who followed in Green’s footsteps.

Book lovers, get ready for a slew of reading suggestions on "Vermont Edition."
Ric Cengeri / VPR

Think of all the people you've met, places you've traveled, dishes you've tasted. All in the pages of the books you've read. Vermont Edition presents our summer reading show to introduce you to more new worlds by offering a tome of book recommendations.

"Skip To The End" is the latest graphic novel written by Middlebury author Jeremy Holt.
Insight Comics / Justion Holt courtesy Simon & Schuster, Inc.

Music has the power to transport listeners across time, evoking memories of the past and whisking the listener back to a different age and place.

In his new graphic novel Skip To The End, Middlebury author Jeremy Holt explores how the right piece of music can take a listener back to their youth, to what they were wearing, who they were in love with. And maybe to just moments before something went wrong. 

Author Rick Winston's book "Red Scare In The Green Mountains" looks at the era of McCarthyism in Vermont from 1946 through 1960.
Rootstock Publishing, courtesy

Blacklists and attacks on the free press. Intolerance and fear used for political gain. The Red Scare and anti-communist McCarthyism flourished across America—and Vermont—in the 1940s and 50s. We're talking with author Rick Winston about his new book looking at instances of "red scare" and "red-baiting" in Vermont.

VCFA sign in Montpelier, the letters surrounding the name Vermont College of Fine Arts with a building in the background.
Bob Kinzel / VPR

The list of 2018 finalists has been revealed for the Vermont Book Award — a literary prize awarded annually by Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier, for works of outstanding literary merit by Vermont authors.

The Icecube Neutrino Observatory at the South Pole sits atop an array of detectors buried deep within the clear antarctic ice.
Courtesy of National Science Foundation

It's a cutting-edge telescope buried a mile under the ice at the South Pole, but in many ways, the Icecube Neutrino Observatory is hardly a telescope at all. It doesn't point up at the sky; in fact, it points down, looking through the earth. It's just one of the paradoxical parts of a new field of astronomy looking at the universe by tracking the elusive “ghost particle” known as the neutrino. 

"Breakout," the new novel by author Kate Messner, captures a community's response - and questions - following the escape of two inmates from a nearby maximum security prison.
From left: Bloomsbury Publishing, Kate Messner / Courtesy

Two men escaped from a maximum security prison in Dannemora, New York, three years ago. The Adirondack community was wracked by fear and uncertainy as the manhunt to find the two convicted murders lasted nearly a month.

But the incident also inspired author Kate Messner to write a young adult novel based on the frightening real-life event.

Author Loung Ung, right, talks with "Vermont Edition" host Jane Lindholm before the students in Essex High School's Global Leadership Program.
Anna Ste. Marie / VPR

Author Loung Ung was just five years old when communist revolutionaries known as the Khmer Rouge took control of her home country of Cambodia. Nearly a quarter of the population died in the ensuing genocide. But she survived, eventually making her way to Vermont. She recently returned to her alma mater to speak with students as part of Essex High School's Global Leadership Program. 

Reeve Lindbergh's new book "Two Lives" explores her own experiences against the background of growing up with some of the most famous parents in the country.
courtesy of Reeve Lindbergh

Reeve Lindbergh grew up in the long shadow cast by her parents, Anne and Charles Lindbergh.

Her father’s feats as an aviator made him one of the best-known people of his time, and the kidnapping and death of the Lindbergh’s infant son in 1932 only increased the family’s notoriety. Later, Charles became a leader in the non-interventionist movement before World War II, the original America First Committee.

Newly exiled Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn in Kazakhstan in 1953 (left); Solzhenitsyn  with his sons in Cavendish in August 1976; Solzhenitsyn at his self-made writing table in Cavendish during the 1980s.
Cavendish Historical Society, courtesy

His novels earned him the 1970 Nobel Prize in literature and exile from the Soviet Union, but in Vermont Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn is also know for the nearly 20 years he lived and worked in the town of Cavendish. We're looking at the Russian writer's works, his time in the state and what his novels say to readers in 2018.

"The Long Shadow" by Beth Kanell is set in the Northeast Kingdom in the run-up to the Civil War.
images courtesy of Beth Kanell

A new historical novel geared to a teenage audience tells the story of a young woman in the Northeast Kingdom in the run-up to the Civil War. Author Beth Kanell says she wrote the novel in part to challenge Vermonters on how they think about the state's history in relation to slavery. 

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